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2015 Trooper of the Year: Sgt. Dennis Koenen, State Patrol, St. Cloud

Koenen trooper of the year 2015

Throughout Sgt. Dennis Koenen’s nearly 30 years on the job, he has been a consistent performer. Although Sgt. Koenen will retire later this year, he still treats every day as if it were his first day on the job. He has maintained a high level of enforcement since he started in 1986 and has maintained a positive, respectful attitude towards work and life despite seeing more than his share of death and destruction. He strongly believes in the State Patrol’s mission of effectively changing drivers’ behavior through enforcement and education. His positive attitude is infectious to those around him, and he needs very little, if any, oversight or direction.

Sgt. Koenen is the State Patrol’s representative in the Kandiyohi Safe Communities Coalition, presented at the local Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) regional workshops and has taken a leadership role in his station regarding fatality reduction efforts by identifying the behaviors associated with fatal crashes in Kandiyohi and Meeker Counties.

One of Sgt. Koenen’s partners recently said, “I want to be a better person and trooper because I work with him – to be like him.” According to his captain, “Sgt. Dennis Koenen has been modeling what a state trooper should look and act like for the last 30 years. I have always been amazed at his work ethic and the quality of his work. Any new trooper would do well to model him- or herself after Sgt. Koenen!”

The Trooper of the Year award is presented to the trooper who best demonstrates outstanding work performance, initiative, leadership and effective interpersonal relations.